No. 7 Beavers Set to Host Kentucky on Senior Night

March 17, 2010

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THE MEET ... After spending the last four weekends on the road, the seventh-ranked Oregon State gymnastics team (12-3) finally returns to Gill Coliseum for Senior Night to face No. 18 Kentucky (7-6) Friday at 7 p.m. Immediately following the meet OSU's three seniors, Laura-Ann Chong, Mandi Rodriguez and Whitney Watson will be honored as they will have performed for the final time in front of the home crowd. ... Live scoring will be available at www.osubeavers.com.

THE SERIES ... The Beavers lead the all-time series with the Wildcats 2-0 with both meetings coming in recent years. Oregon State beat Kentucky at last year's NCAA Central Regional Championships. OSU also defeated UK at the 2006 Salbasgeon Suites Invitational.

NO WEBCAST FOR SEASON FINALE ... Due to a schedule conflict, Oregon State Athletics will be unable to provide a web stream of the March 19 gymnastics meet against Kentucky. In place of the live webcast, the Oregon State Sports Video team will provide a highlight video the following day, free of charge.

WHAT'S COMING UP ... Next week, Oregon State heads to Tucson, Ariz. to participate in the Pac-10 Championships. The Beavers have finished second each of the last two years. Competition is on Saturday, Mar. 27, with a practice day on Friday. Jen Kesler and Leslie Mak will seek to defend their share of the Pac-10 title they earned on the bars in 2009, and Mandi Rodriguez will be out to defend her title on the floor exercise.

EVENT TITLES GALORE ... Oregon State began the season with a 9-0 record through the first six meets. During that streak the Beavers earned at least a share of every single individual event and all-around title! Over the last month of the season, of which OSU has been on the road every week, the Beavers have continued to rack up shares of eight more individual titles despite the travel and competing against six top 25 teams, three of which are ranked among the top 10 ... Mandi Rodriguez and Becky Colvin have combined to win on vault in all 10 meets. In addition, last week at Utah was the first time this season that an OSU gymnast did not earn the win on the balance beam.

LAST TIME ON THE FLOOR ... Oregon State bounced back from a disappointing trip to LSU two weekends ago to notch one of its best performances of the season in a quad-meet at Utah. The Beavers 'hit' 23 out of 24 routines, including going 12-for-12 on bars and beam to open the meet after combining for four falls the previous week on those events. OSU finished second, with a score of 196.650, in a meet that featured three other top 25 teams - Utah (was ranked No. 9), Penn State (No. 18) and Southern Utah (No. 21) ... Makayla Stambaugh and Mandi Rodriguez had strong meets scoring 39.375 and 39.275 in the all-around respectively ... Becky Colvin had a career night tying her personal bests on both of her events scoring 9.925 to tie for the event title on vault and 9.875 on the floor ... Melanie Jones nailed a beautiful vault to set a career-high with a 9.875 ... Olivia Vivian returned to the beam and floor lineups after resting a sore knee at LSU ... Leslie Mak performed on the bars for the first time since the first meet of the season. She had sprained her elbow during warm-ups at Ohio State in January.

TICKETS ... Tickets for the final 2010 home meet against Kentucky, this Friday, Mar. 19, are on sale.

Individual meet tickets are also available by calling 1-800-GO-BEAVS, in person at the OSU Ticket Office located in room 107 of Gill Coliseum or by going online to osubeavers.com.

UPDATES FROM THE PRACTICE GYM ... Freshman Kelsi Blalock, who sprained her ankle during warm-ups last month at California (2/7), has been working on 'timers' this week in the gym in hopes of returning to the vault lineup. She will not compete this week ... Freshman Leilani Alferos has returned to practice after a bicycle accident two weeks ago (2/22). She is also pushing toward becoming a viable option on the vault.

IN THE RANKINGS ... All four of Oregon State's lineups are ranked in this week's Top 10. The Beavers are tied for 10th on vault, tied for fifth on the uneven bars, are ranked fifth on the balance beam and fourth on the floor exercise ... in addition, several OSU gymnasts are ranked among the top 15 in the nation: Mandi Rodriguez (9.925 RQS) is fifth and Becky Colvin (9.900) is tied for 10th on vault; Laura-Ann Chong (9.910) is fourth on bars; Chong (9.870) is tied for 12th on the beam; Makayla Stambaugh and Rodriguez are tied for third (9.920) on the floor; Rodriguez is 13th in the all-around (39.385).

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